The House Republican leadership needs to get over their paralyzing fear of a government shutdown, which is based on the liberal media narrative

Budget Nuclear Option: Shut Down Obama Until the Election

This column by ACRU General Counsel and Policy Director for the CCPP Peter Ferrara was published March 21, 2011 on
The House Republican leadership needs to get over their paralyzing fear of a government shutdown, which is based on the liberal media narrative of the politics of the 1995 shutdown. That shutdown eventually transformed annual $200 billion deficits for more than a decade into $560 billion in budget surpluses over four years. That resulted because Clinton caved in to Republican budget cut demands, and even to Republican tax cuts that spurred the economy and long term revenue growth. The shutdown was followed by the first reelection of a Republican House majority in two thirds of a century, with the Republican Senate majority reelected as well.
Today the budget crisis is far worse. President Obama’s own budget admits that he will more than double the national debt in just one term of office, with an admitted budget deficit this year of $1.645 trillion, the highest anywhere in world history by several times over. Friday the Congressional Budget Office issued a report concluding that federal deficits over the next 10 years under President Obama’s budget would soar by nearly a third more than he estimated, totaling nearly $10 trillion over those 10 years, which would nearly double the national debt again to $21 billion by 2021.
And that assumes trillions in tax increases on the nation’s employers and investors and already overtaxed businesses that will never produce anywhere near the projected revenues. It also assumes no further recessions over the next 10 years, and stable interest rates on all those trillions in national debt.
Yet the position of President Obama and Congressional Democrats is that they will not agree to any budget cuts of any consequence. With a budget deficit this year of $1,645 billion, and total federal spending of $3,819 billion, the Democrats are insisting they could not accept more than $10 billion in spending cuts. CBO’s Friday report indicates that the president’s budget overall increases the deficit for this year by $26 billion.
The Republican leadership is losing their own base by displaying too much of a ready willingness to compromise, while Obama and the Democrats are not losing any support from their spending addicted political machine. The Republicans need to go on the offensive to reverse this political dynamic.
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